If today you hear his voice, harden not your hearts! (Psalm 95)

Jesus is the definitive revelation of God. He is the perfect image of the invisible God and the sign par excellence of God’s love. In Him we have access to God. God continues to speak to us in creation, in the history of salvation, in the Scriptures, in the sacraments, in the events of our lives. “The people were astonished at his teaching, for he taught them as one having authority and not as the scribes” (Mark 1:22). Jesus teaches with authority. He acts with authority. The authority of Jesus comes from God because He speaks and acts in the person of God. His authority is based on the Spirit. To the paralytic man He said, “Son, your sins are forgiven” (Mark 2:5). Some of the scribes were scandalized because for them that is blasphemy. God alone forgives sins. Jesus forgives sins because He is the mediator between God and man. Genuine authority enables, empowers, liberates people and makes them grow. True authority is service because service is love in action. Jesus teaches with authority because His teachings form man according to the mind and heart of God. He is the authoritative wisdom that restores humanity to its original goodness, created in the likeness and image of God. His teachings reveal to us the right attitude to be sons and daughters of Father and to have a right relationship with Him, with ourselves, with others and with creation. Jesus acts with authority by expelling demons by the power of His Word alone because His word is the only true power, the power of truth and love. His healing liberates people from slavery and addiction. It signals that the reign of Satan is ended and that the kingdom of wholeness has come. If today you hear his voice, harden not your hearts. Our response to Jesus teaching us and acting with authority is to listen and surrender ourselves to Him. In doing so, we have a similar authority and power and our lives are transformed. It is a decision, a choice. Or we are for Jesus or against Him. There is no middle way. We are called to make the choices, values and vision of Jesus our own. When we do that, we are empowered to become children of the Father.